Singapore qualified to mark its own exams

Norman Adli Ramli, 16, hugging his mother, Madam Norlizah Abdul Kahar, 40, a bank officer, after he received his O-level results at Serangoon Garden Secondary School yesterday. He did well enough to qualify for junior college. Students who sat last y
Norman Adli Ramli, 16, hugging his mother, Madam Norlizah Abdul Kahar, 40, a bank officer, after he received his O-level results at Serangoon Garden Secondary School yesterday. He did well enough to qualify for junior college. Students who sat last year's O-level examinations set a new record, with 84.8 per cent of the cohort attaining five or more passes. This is up from 83.4 per cent in 2017 and 84.3 in 2016, which was Singapore's best showing at the national exam in at least three decades.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

Barely a year after A-level scripts were stolen in Britain, O-level scripts have gone missing (32 O-level Additional Maths scripts lost in Britain; Jan 15).

The nagging question on everyone's mind is, after all these years, can't we mark our own exam papers?

The need to rely on Cambridge University's established reputation to boost the credibility of our educational qualifications was understandable in the first 50 years of our development.

But as a First World Country whose education system is ranked among the best in the world, we should be confident enough to mark our own exam scripts by now.

The loss of exam scripts may seem trivial to adults, but to students who spent sleepless nights preparing for their exams, the potential ordeal of having to retake the paper is anything but so.

This is not to mention the fact that students have to pay to sit these exams.

We have enough eminently qualified academics in Singapore to mark exam scripts.

We have enough eminently qualified academics in Singapore to mark exam scripts... It is time now to take a leap of faith and be confident in our own ability as we venture forward on our own.

This will remove the potential hassle of exam scripts being lost overseas.

Our students have benefited from the rigorous standards set by Cambridge University.

It is time now to take a leap of faith and be confident in our own ability as we venture forward on our own.

Seah Yam Meng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 17, 2019, with the headline 'Singapore qualified to mark its own exams'. Print Edition | Subscribe